November 29, 2013

President of Montenegro in Kolašin
President of Montenegro Filip Vujanović, who is a President of the Honorary Committee for celebration of 70th anniversary of the State Anti-fascist Council of the National Deliberation of Montenegro and Boka, spoke at the Ceremonial Academy which was held today in Kolašin.

Address of the President reads as follows:

Citizens of Kolašin and Montenegro,
Antifascist veterans and antifascists,
President of the Supreme Court of Montenegro, respected Mrs. Vesna Medenica,
President of the Constitutional Court of Montenegro Mr. Milan Marković,
High guests,
Your Excellencies,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

In the history of any state there are events that form its eternal value, which belong to its foundations, which determined its contemporariness and towards which future time will also express permanent respect. In the history of Montenegro such events preceded the international recognition of Montenegro in the Berlin Congress in 1878 and renewal of the unjustly deprived sovereignty.

Among the events of paramount importance, which contributed to renewal of sovereignty of Montenegro, exalted place belongs to the Constituent Assembly of the State Antifascist Council of the National Deliberation of Montenegro and Boka, which was held here in Kolašin seven decades ago, in which way its permanent historical value was recognized.

It was not a coincidence that it was held in Kolašin, then wartime capital of Montenegro. Montenegro which is at a critical juncture of roads, empires and religions in the struggle for freedom, against great and powerful, at the same time created and renewed the state. In such Montenegro, at such crossroads, Kolašin was the scene of libertarian battles. It is valuable to emphasize that in liberation of Kolašin the leader of liberators Duke Miljan Vukov wrote that he participated in numerous battles – as standard bearer, captain and duke, but no battle was as terrible and bloody as liberation battle for Kolašin.

It is worth to be permanently remembered that the Kolašin brigade of Montenegrin National Army in a grandiose battle of Mojkovac was worthy of great history of Kolašin and Montenegro, and that more than a thousand soldiers and officers from this brigade died in the liberation wars from 1912 to 1918. The fact that Kolašin as wartime capital of Montenegro in the World War II was eighteen times bombed and that among 1400 fighters even 400 were killed with loss of 250 lives outside the front lines will also be equally permanently respected. At that time, Kolašin with small population deserved eternal admiration and gratitude.

It was natural that exactly Kolašin was determined as venue for holding the Constituent Assembly of State Anti-fascist Council of the National Deliberation of Montenegro and Boka and initiation of the process of renewal of the independent Montenegro in November 1943, when two thirds of the territory of Montenegro was liberated and the antifascist movement of South Slavic peoples represented third military force in the occupied Europe.

In its multidimensional significance this constituent assembly and election of its representative body is marked with several highly important values.

The first and undoubtedly special value is renewal of unjustly seized sovereignty of Montenegro. The State Antifascist Council of National Liberation, as the highest body of legislative and executive authority, was elected at the Constituent Assembly. The Council elected its executive board with seven administrative divisions which, for the purpose of executive authority, constituted authorities that meant discontinuity of disinherited state of Montenegro.

The historically valuable proclamation of the Constituent Assembly sent messages of highest importance from that important part of history of Montenegro. First of all, greatness and special value of Montenegrin antifascism was recognized. Our Anti-Fascist Uprising of July 13th, which was experienced by the French and world great man Jean Paul Sartre as a warning to the mankind which way it should go.. “was evaluated in this proclamation as the first nationwide uprising among the enslaved peoples of Europe which ignited an inferno of the national armed uprising. In 1941, along with the first uprising in the enslaved Europe in the great December Pljevlja battle, the biggest battle in Europe in 1941, readiness was demonstrated also for military frontal battle, which message confirmed libertarianism as inevitability.

The Constituent Assembly sent two grandiose messages in the mentioned proclamation. It made clear and eternal distance from Podgorica Assembly and St. Peter’s Day Assembly, archiving them permanently historically. It was clearly stated in the proclamation in relation to the Podgorica Assembly, I will quote” ... for 23 years of the former Yugoslavia the Montenegrin people has lived in a subordinate position and anarchy and depended on charity of non-national Belgrade regime and its Montenegrin supporters. But and dungeon, violence and fraud were a response to each request of Montenegrin people for democratic rights and national liberty...”

In that sense, the proclamation as negative personal symbol of Montenegro in the World War II, gave permanent destructive historical place to the Chetnik leader Pavle Đurišić.

At the same time, the proclamation marked creators of quisling independent fascist state, which was proclaimed in the St. Peter’s Day Assembly on July 12th, 1941, as fascism associates in Montenegro, through personal symbolism of Sekula Drljević who was an important Ustasha movement personality in Pavelić’s NDH. In that way a message was sent that Montenegro as fascist does not have any value even if it was independent. Finally, Sekula’s twelfth July fascism was given a clear response by the citizens of Montenegro already the next day by the great nationwide uprising of July 13th.

Exactly because of both victory and these strong interior destructions, Montenegrin anti-fascism is truly special and unique by its value and significance.

Second highly important value of the Constituent Assembly and establishment of the State Anti-fascist Council of the National Deliberation along with antifascism is in the full recognition of another permanent good of Montenegro – inter-ethnic and inter-religious harmony. Its 544 delegates that were elected for the Constituent Assembly were elected among reputable men from all the parts of Montenegro with clear warning that the election was to be done “..without difference in relation to political-party, religious and social affiliation..”. And then Montenegro in these great and difficult times recognized that it can have future only if its nations and religions were in full harmony. We must be proud of the fact that the then Montenegro passed the great exam in a magnificent way. Presence and future must find examples of greatness of inter-ethnic and inter-religious harmony also in this value of the State Anti-fascist Council of the National Deliberation.

In the end, the State Anti-fascist Council of the National Deliberation in that time of turbulent history, exactly on today’s day 70 years ago, at the Second session of AVNOJ in Jajce, received the verification of all the decisions in which way a basis for state coexistence of six equal Republics was created, but also transformation of the State Anti-fascist Council of the National Deliberation in 1944 into Montenegrin Antifascist Assembly of National Liberation, as the highest legislative executive authority in Montenegro, which was constituted as Montenegrin National Assembly already on April 5th 1945.

In that way, necessary foundation was created to renew independence of Montenegro in a democratic manner in the May referendum in 2006.

This sublime reminder of historical value of the State Anti-fascist Council of the National Deliberation at the same time obliges to express respect for the greatness and deed of its president and first president of the Montenegrin Antifascist Assembly of the National Liberation, one of great men of our history Dr. Niko Miljanić. In the way of human mission of his father Dr. Petar Miljanić, founder of Montenegrin scientific medicine and founder of the medical school, Dr. Niko MIljanić, after receiving education in Switzerland and graduation at the Faculty of Medicine in Paris, as a volunteer in both world wars, was elected as leader of state authorities of Montenegro, by which begun its renewal. Humanistic and civil definition of this great man obliges that exactly Kolašin, in the name of libertarianism of Montenegro, raises a memorial to him as an expression of permanent respect.

Once again, expressing my admiration for constitution of the State Anti-fascist Council of the National Deliberation and respect for all who dedicated themselves to it, thus renewing sovereignty of Montenegro I am sending to them permanent gratefulness in our eternal Montenegro.

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